Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Taylor Swift Charms Singapore PT 1

America's Country/Pop Sweetheart Taylor Swift showed the grace and charm that has endeared her to fans not just in her native homeland but around the world. Who can forget that moment when Kanye tried to interrupted her at the video music awards that sparked outrage across the globe - and that's not hyperbole when I say that folks - my niece is a HUGE Taylor Swift Fan and the name Kanye still invokes her ire and I don't blame her.  To Swift's credit, she handled the situation with grace, class and dignity of one far beyond her years. Any other lady may have kicked him in the cojones. I would have decked him, if I actually had any upper body strength and actually knew how to throw a proper punch!

So when it was announced that Swift was headed to town for concert, her excitement was tempered by the fact that she was going to be out of town on a school trip and she would only be returning the day after the concert. So I decided I would try to do the next best thing, get her an autographed CD, if it was humanly possible. When I freelanced for a kids magazine, that would be no problem as I would be invited to round table interviews or press conferences, but as I am now a struggling albeit well-fed children's book author/publisher I knew no press invitations would be forthcoming.

So what's an uncle to do? Follow the chatrooms via twitter/ facebook to see if there would be any opportunities to meet the star to accomplish this Sisyphean task? Bingo! Ms Swift actually tweeted that she would be departing on a night flight out of Los Angeles.  A flight that would be arriving 6AM!! I knew that Divine intervention would be needed to get me up on time.

You see, I'm not a morning person! My Sunday School students can attest to that - the grumpiest Sunday School teacher alive - So I figured I would have to drag myself out of bed and to the airport before then and I don't even own an alarm clock! Of course most of my friends thought I was completely nuts - nothing unusual, my friends think I'm a jack short of a full box of crackers,  as one of them said " Dave, I have a life" when I asked him if he'd like to join me. He elected to stay at home and watch the Super Bowl.

So anyway, I decided to stay up, knowing if I dozed off, I would not get up until mid morning. So I watched the bio channel and monitored the tweets of a dozen or so fans who had been waiting at the airport  for over 12 hours. Do their parents know what they were up to? Did they finish their homework?

I dragged myself out of bed at 4am and got ready to depart. I managed to convince a friend who had a CD he wanted signed and together we headed to the airport in the predawn darkness.  I was equipped with the prerequisites: Sharpies, A CD and two of my children's books to give to her. I'm currently listening to her as I write my potential best seller. C'mon the Taylor Swift magic's got to work, right? When we got there a handful of devoted fans were spread out across the airport.

OK I have to say I felt like I was in a segment of Sesame Street, you know the segment that goes: one of these things is not like the others, one of these things just does not belong? OK, guess which item I felt like? My mere presence raised the median of her fans' age base.

I found a seat by some very pleasant young fans as well as the founders of Singapore's Official Taylor Swift fan club who were animated and chatty. We began to voice our concern as herds of students in school uniforms began to surge through the arrival hall's sliding doors. And they looked like screamers. In fact some of them did say they were going to scream.

At this point, I was hoping a case of laryngitis would spread quickly and effectively - OK I know this sounds mean, but heck when you haven't had any sleep in almost 24 hours, the last thing you want is a bunch of screaming teenagers screaming in your ear...Yes, I admit it I'm a curmudgeon...

To be continued...

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